Rape convictions: A Montgomery County jury has convicted a Germantown man of raping two teenage girls while knowing he was HIV positive, Montgomery State's Attorney Douglas F. Gansler announced yesterday.

William N. Karanja, 33, was convicted Friday of two counts of second-degree rape, two counts of knowingly attempting to transfer HIV, three counts of reckless endangerment and several other charges, Gansler said. He faces a maximum possible sentence of 105 years in jail.

On June 22, 2003, police were called to an apartment in the 13200 block of Bristlecone Way in Germantown after a man reported a girl screaming for help. Police found Karanja in the apartment with two 14-year-old girls and a 15-year-old boy, all of whom were naked and unconscious. Karanja was arrested and charged with raping the girls. He was convicted of reckless endangerment in connection with the boy.


Report investigated: Alexandria police are investigating the claims of a 19-year-old District man who said he was set on fire during a robbery attempt, police said.

The man arrived at Inova Alexandria Hospital about 11:30 a.m. yesterday, suffering from severe burns to his upper body, police said. He told police that he had been at Ewald Park in the 4400 block of Duke Street when an unknown suspect poured gasoline on him and set him on fire during an attempted robbery.

Police searched the park but found no evidence of gasoline or a fire. Police said that the victim's burns were not consistent with gasoline and that there were inconsistencies in the man's account.

Last week in Fairfax County, another District resident who had been burned on his upper body told police that he was set on fire during a robbery attempt. Police later determined that the report was false.

Murder charge: A 21-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in the fatal stabbing of a pregnant Manassas woman who was killed as she worked at a general store, police said.

Rosa Isabel Umana, 30, of the 8500 block of Yoder Street, who was a clerk at the Rosita Shop at the Georgetown South Shopping Center, died at the scene Monday afternoon, police said. The motive for the crime is unclear, authorities said.

A Manassas police detective who was waiting for takeout food at a nearby restaurant saw Jorge Vazquez-Hernandez, of no fixed address, run out of the shop, police said. After a chase by several officers, Vazquez-Hernandez was arrested and remains held without bond at the Prince William County jail.

Compiled from reports by staff writers.